Reno Rodeo Foundation Launches Bears & Badges Initiative in Partnership with Local Law Enforcement Agencies

Month-long campaign in honor of National Foster Care Awareness Month

RENO, Nev. – The Reno Rodeo Foundation and Northern Nevada law enforcement agencies are joining forces through the month of May in honor of National Foster Care Awareness month. The goal is to raise money for abused and neglected infants, children and teens who have been rescued from unfit homes. The initiative follows the year-long Denim Drive efforts that have raised more than $1.75 million since its inception.

“When the public thinks about law enforcement their primary thought is probably around how they keep the community safe from crime,” said Scott Peterson, Reno Rodeo Foundation President. “Every day law enforcement is on the frontlines helping remove kids from unsafe situations, which can be a very scary time for them. Having a brand-new teddy bear waiting for them in the back of the squad car or in the reading rooms when they have to attend family court proceedings can provide immense comfort and security during uncertain times.”

The Reno Rodeo Foundation has a long history of providing new teddy bears to the Denim Drive kids. After more than 500 bears were purchased in December during the annual Denim Drive, the Reno Rodeo Foundation chose to make them the center point of the Bears & Badges campaign.

“This past year has been challenging, especially for the children in our community who stayed home in awful and painful situations,” said Sheriff Darin Balaam. “On a regular basis, Washoe County Deputy Sheriffs see firsthand how traumatic it can be for children when they are in unsafe living conditions. For the Sheriff’s Office, teaming up with the Reno Rodeo Foundation to bring awareness to our foster system and raise money to properly care for and clothe Nevada’s children helps further our mission to serve and protect this community. We are honored to be partners with the Reno Rodeo Foundation.”

Donors can make monetary donations online on the Reno Rodeo Foundation website or can text “Denim Drive” to 44321. New clothing and teddy bears are distributed throughout the year by the Reno Rodeo Team 365 volunteers, in partnership with the Washoe County Human Services Agency and the Nevada State Department of Child and Family Services.

For more information on Bears & Badges or the Reno Rodeo Foundation visit or call 775-322-9875.

About the Reno Rodeo Foundation
The Reno Rodeo Foundation was incorporated in 1986 and is a Nevada-based registered 501(c)3 nonprofit. In addition to the annual Denim Drive that helps clothe neglected and abused foster children 365 days a year, the organization provides educational scholarships to eligible Northern Nevada high school graduates including supporting foster youth education, funds a Reno Rodeo Wish for a child, provides funding to purchase new books to comfort Denim Drive children who are required to attend family court proceedings, and builds community partnerships and serves as the anchor for large capital projects to improve the lives of children. Like Reno Rodeo Foundation on Facebook, follow us on Twitter or for more information, please visit

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